I'm applying to the Honors College at the University of Missouri, and one of the requirements is submitting an additional essay. One of the essay options states: "If you feel that an essay you have already written encompasses information that would be helpful to the committee, feel free to use it instead. You may use your Common Application essay..."
However, I've already used my Common Application essay on my regular application. I have a back-up essay I can submit instead, but it isn't quite as strong as the essay I initially applied with.
My question is: Would it be beneficial to submit a completely new essay? Or can I use the one I already applied to the school with?
I'm more wondering if that's looked down upon by admissions councilors or not, or if it's two completely separate people who read them and won't know if it's already used.
Thank you so much for your advice!
If your backup essay emphasizes another part of you or communicates a better voice for colleges to get to know you on paper, then I say go for it. If you feel ashamed of the backup essay, then I would not submit it. Honors colleges are looking for who each individual student is, rather than perfection. Essays are used to communicate a few things: can this student write well, and who is this student? Even honors essays look for those two things. If you can write well (not perfect, but well), and if the backup essay contributes to answering the "who are you" question, submit it.
Unfortunately, you do not have a lot of time. I would reread your back-up essay and think about it: Is it easier to start from scratch or polish this up? If your back-up essay simply needs some revising and grammar correction, run with it. However, if you feel like it's a lame topic, than you may need to start a new idea. What is the topic of your back-up essay, if you don't mind sharing?
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